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How fear and anxiety drive consumerism

Fear and anxiety driving consumerism

The AdNews Agency of the year awards were on last week and in reading the results in the latest issue of AdNews there really was some great work produced in 2010.

The most notable I thought, was Happy Soldiers campaign for Tontine, the Australian market leader in pillows.

The problem Tontine faced was that there market was stagnating and their products lifecycle was too long, consumers were too attached to their pillows and refused to change them.

Enter Happy Soldiers and the ‘Dated Pillows’ campaign. Happy soldiers research showed them that a whole ecosystem of bacteria, dead skin cells and fungi were living in old pillows and that if they could educate the population of this, they could create a level of mass anxiety and fear that would shorten the product lifecycle of pillows in general, considering Tontine had a 50% market share, this would result in increased sales for their client

Their media execution was spot on, ‘burning’ the entire budget in a five day campaign that included TVC’s, drive-time radio and online in an attempt to create mass anxiety and power word of mouth that would extend the campaign lifecycle even when ad spend ceased.

The most brilliant part of the campaign however, was using the product itself as a billboard. By stamping each pillow with a ‘best before’ date they ensured that consumers were reminded of the facts and figures put forward in the campaign every time they changed their pillowcases, and were given a time sensitive call to action that ultimately encouraged the consumer to take the desire action.

In a world where time-sensitive, contextual advertising is the most effective at driving consumer action… They nailed it. The result: after just 15 days sales of Tontine pillows went from an average of 32,000 per week to 142,000, a 345% uplift in sales.

Kudos to Happy Soldiers and Tontine for a well executed campaign, and a well deserved win for Ad Campaign of the Year and Media Campaign of the Year.


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